Black. If you are practicing the craft, you probably gravitate (or have been told to gravitate) to the color black. It’s dark and secretive and mysterious… and flattering… and matches almost everything.
However, once upon a time, if you were chosen to practice the “weird ways” (or threw yourself into it) then you were given a color based on your gifts, future endeavors, or place among the witches. Your color was a simple way to identify who you were. Let’s get into what colors (besides black) you might want to wear to signify to others your path among the magically connected.
Cloak/Robe Colors and Their Meaning
Brown: This is for the beginner. Your first year (-ish) investing into your craft. These practitioners don’t have a specialty and may not know how they are to use their abilities in their lives. Once a destiny is chosen, a specialty, then their color will change. Even if they are still a novice.
Green: The educator. Their job among the mages are to learn and gobble as much as possible, bring to practice, and educate. They may not be skilled in everything they must know and pass on, but their jobs are not to chose favorite types of magic. Their job is to pass it down. Share all of the knowledge. They may decided what order or what discipline students are to work with first, but eventually, they are to pass everything down. The knowledge should not die with them. They can also be leaders, healers, warriors, teachers, solitary, practical mentors, diviners, or a mix as well because they need to know all of the areas of practice, but their primary focus is to learn, practice, and regurgitate.
Blue: The spiritual. They represent harmony and leveled vibrations. They are one with good and evil, destruction and healing, and are fearless. They are not warriors, but guides. They can lead, but their desires are not in power, but in peace and easy-going-ness. Even the destructive need a place in this world. They are brave and are willing to help place the predator where they can acquire prey, and the prey where they can reproduce. Their job is to help the world, and all parts of it (including spiritually) to remain even. They enjoy water and air magic, generally; although this is not a determining factor.
Purple: An advanced solo practitioner. I like to call them the “practicals.” They have a specialty and are great and accomplished at it. They are authors and mentors. They have the knowledge and are seen as an elder. They are happy to help others and mentor but have no desire to teach the totality of the craft. They are a specialized expert and practice. They lead in a way that is an informed participant, but not an organizer. Generally, they are private, solitary. They may serve on as someone on a group of elders.
White: Representing the heat of the sun, they are a leader. They make final decisions. They are well verse in the discovery and acknowledgement of all kinds of magic. They generally have the ability to see the growth potential in others and help point them to their destiny in how they use their craft. They are the final say. There is generally one person who is white at a time. They move from various other areas of magic to represent the leader. They may have once been a teacher, warrior, spiritual, etc. They must be able to access great power, from within or from without.
Red: This is for the warrior. They are a protector. At times, they may have questionable ethics. They are reactive and passionate. They may be feared because they are quite good at hexes and taking down the enemy. The enemy is topic that can be scary to other witches is who the Red decides are enemies. They are loyal until they are crossed. They desire a place to belong to protect and war.
Orange or Rust: Healers. They deal with the earth and nourishment. They enjoy working with plants, herbs, cooking magic, and helping others, but they may be light workers and water healers as well. They are not great at defensive magic. They are meant to fix, mend, heal, and bring people together. They love certain mundane tasks because of the comfort they bring to others. They are creative and crafty. Generally, not demanding, they prefer little stress and strain in their everyday life and would rather just heal others.
Grey: Justice. They work in balance between right and punishment. They create order based on the ethics of their coven, faith, or area. They are talented at binding, tearing, and removing others’ gifts. They are fair and objective (unlike the passionate red) and have the gift of discernment. They seek the advice of the Blue and the Red for fairness; but they are non-linear thinkers. Gifted in prose, they may answer a problem with another problem. They enjoy puzzles and collaboration. If they are consulted, the respect is always given to the Grey when a decision is made, even if the White disagrees. For the Grey is to be unbiased and fair to the letter of their coven’s ethical law.
Black: Solitary mixed practitioner. They mind their business, learn, and are a part of the magical community without too much emphasis in any area. They like it all and are happy to not fit anywhere specifically. Hence, black (holding all color).
Let’s move onto trim:
The trim of the robe can represent how advanced you are in your journey in specific magical uses. Even a white robe can be new to being in that position. Time is non-linear, so the witch will not hold themselves to calendar years. Simply put, once you have your robe, you sew on a trim around the edge of your robe to signify your area of strength.
No trim: Feeling they are still on their journey, unknown of their own advancement and fine with it. They also may just not what to say what they are skilled at.
Black trim: Accomplished at working with spirits, life, death, and divination. They understand energy and are quite good at energy based magic, which includes the weather.
Red trim: Fire focused on spells that can invigorate, grow, or cultivate, and destroy. Great at fire magic.
Blue trim: Water magic, able to influence, dampen, or enhance energies and emotions through lotions, potions, teas, and other fluids.
Green trim: Skilled in growth, agriculture, herbs, poisons, healing, sickness, and the earth. They plant, and pound, and grow. They are good at bags, talismans, and healing.
Purple trim: Understanding of people and animals and their place in the world. They are spiritually connected to above and below, all orders of life. They may not feel connected to ‘gods’ because they are so connected to the world close to themselves. Good at air based magic.
Pink: They are the pleasers. They bring people, energy, and destinies together. They use glamor magic. They can also pull people apart. Also good at stone work. They can get what they want and help others get what they want. They are graceful and use a lot of will.
Orange: These work with poppets and sympathetic magic. They are good at seeing and knowing how things are related to each other.
Yellow: They use astral energy and spells. They know the zodiac, feel the energies from different times of the day, the different energies of different days, and life’s cycles.
Witches should never assume that the trim on a cloak is another witch’s only skill. The trim is simply their strongest ability. A witch should not put more than two on their robe, as it is seen as an exaggeration. Witches may have multiple robes with a different trim highlighting a different skill. For instance, I have several green robes, and one blue (when I don’t want to be a teacher and just want to put on my divination hat). My green robe has black and purple trim, and my blue robe has pink and red. Any witch who feels they need to challenge what another knows are showing their own weakness as an actual novice. Let others be.
Finally, it’s important to look at ropes that tie. The colors signified in the rope that ties your robe or wraps around your waist has personal significance to your faith. Are your deities represented by certain colors? Does your faith have a certain symbol or color associated. This is not to help others. This is for you. If others recognize the significance, you’ve found a sister in the craft, but your rope is your message to you and your faith, alone. In my tradition, this rope is buried or burned with you when you die. Others may gift them on to be used on ancestral altars. And still others burn, bury, or give to nature in ceremony. Allowing for the connection to their living life to be untied.
This research as been compiled from various European, African, American, and Asian folk religions who have color significance in their practice. I find it beautiful how many (cross-culturally), would be identified by other witches as to how they practice based on their cloak.
I hope you find color in your life. Get a cloak, and own your identity as a witch.